Democratic Attorney General Janet Mills has won the gubernatorial Democratic primary under Maine's new ranked-choice voting method, the nation's biggest test of the system.
Mills had the most first-place votes and her lead held after additional rounds of tabulations under the new system that had voters rank candidates from first to last on the ballot.
In a tweet Wednesday night, Mills said she is deeply honored to be declared the winner of the Democratic primary for Governor of Maine. She added that she is excited to get to work to win the general election.
Mills unofficially received slightly more than 54 percent of the vote, about 9 percent more than runner-up Adam Cote, according to News Center Maine.
The winning result was announced Wednesday, eight days after Maine's primary.
Additional tabulations were triggered because no one collected a majority of first-round votes. Because of that, there were additional voting rounds that eliminated last-place finishers. Those voters' second-place selections were reallocated to the remaining field.
Officials said all of the June 12 primary election ballots had been downloaded onto computers.
Under the election system, voters rank all candidates from first to last on the ballot, and a candidate who collects a majority of the vote wins. If there's no majority, then last-place candidates are eliminated and votes reallocated in additional rounds of tabulations.
The system was used for the first time in a state wide primary in a race featuring seven Democratic candidates for governor. It may be used in the Democratic primary in the 2nd Congressional District. That depends on whether candidate Jared Golden ekes out a majority in the first round.